NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) – The Tennessee Department of Health has confirmed additional cases and deaths related to COVID-19 across the state on Monday, September 28.
The health department reported 737 new cases, bringing the state to 193,732 total cases, a .4% day-to-day increase since Sunday. Of the total cases, 186,499 are confirmed and 7,233 are probable.
Tennessee’s seven-day new cases average decreased to 1,332 additional cases per day.
Of the 193,732 cases, 98,996 are female (51%), 92,936 are male (48%), and 1,800 are pending (1%).
TDH also confirmed 12 additional deaths, bringing Tennessee up to 2,389 total deaths.
Out of the confirmed positive cases, 176,030 are listed as inactive/recovered, an increase of 887 in the last 24 hours.
The number of total hospitalizations now sits at 8,619. There are 710 people currently hospitalized.
Tennessee has processed 2,840,109 tests with 2,646,377 negative results. The percentage for positive cases remains around 6.8%. Monday’s update added 14,735 tests to the state’s total.
COVID-19 in Nashville
Earlier Monday, Metro Public Health Department officials reported an increase of 193 COVID-19 cases in Davidson County, bringing the county’s total to 28,846.
During his weekly coronavirus news conference last week, Nashville Mayor John Cooper announced, beginning October 1, bars and restaurants will be allowed to have 100 patrons per floor with an additional 100 patrons at an outside location, including a patio or rooftop, at up to 50% capacity. All bars and restaurants must close at 11 p.m.
Cooper said Phase Three will also allow events of up to 30% capacity or 500 people with a plan approved by the Metro Public Health Department. That will authorize the Grand Ole Opry to have an in-person audience of 500 for its 95th-anniversary show on Saturday, October 3.
Schools Moving Forward
Following the release of what has been considered “unprecedented” data, Governor Bill Lee said he will address reading and writing deficiencies for Tennessee 3rd graders.
Both he and State Education Commissioner Penny Schwinn say it’s an urgent situation that preliminary data from her department projects an estimated 50% decrease in proficiency rates in 3rd-grade reading and a projected 65% decrease in math proficiency.
“Now we have some data to substantiate what we expected,” said Governor Lee Wednesday. “We will not wait until January to begin…to develop a plan to address it. Absolutely not.”
Lee added he’ll address the dramatically dropping proficiencies for 3rd graders within weeks, but Education Commissioner Schwinn says there is no quick fix and “there must be realistic expectations” for dealing with the issue.
Masks will no longer be required in public while in Wilson County beginning late Wednesday night, the county’s mayor announced Monday.
Mayor Randall Hutto said he has reviewed the number of COVID-19 cases and trends and “made the decision to rescind the mask mandate.” It will expire at 11:59 p.m. Wednesday, according to Hutto.
The mayor explained this will not impact schools, businesses or long-term care facilities, which develop their own policies and procedures to prevent the spread of the virus.
Last week, the face covering order in Rutherford County expired earlier than originally planned.
A letter from Rutherford County mayor Bill Ketron explained why they were able to lift the order sooner.
“Your compliance with the order which went into effect on July 22, had a significant impact on our numbers going down. This was hard to ignore. We are encouraged by the data trends and want to continue down that path! This does not discount the fact that the virus is here and not going anywhere anytime soon. Therefore, I am asking that as a community, we revert once more to being #RutherfordResponsible.”
Montgomery County Mayor Jim Durrett announced Monday he will not extend the emergency order requiring employees of businesses open to the public to wear masks. He has, however, determined that anyone from the general public entering a county-owned facility will be required to wear a mask. The City of Clarksville offices and Clarksville-Montgomery County School System facilities will also continue to require visitors to wear masks.
TDH’s Reporting Format
On September 3, the Tennessee Department of Health announced changes to the format for sharing data on COVID-19, updating how some metrics are calculated, reflecting evolving knowledge of the pandemic.
The new format reflects a change in how active cases are calculated.
Under the new format, TDH case count reports will include figures for “Inactive/Recovered” cases and will no longer include data for “Recovered” cases. “Inactive/Recovered” cases will include people who are 14 days or more beyond their illness onset date (or, for asymptomatic cases, their specimen collection date). This will more closely align with what is now understood about the infectious period of COVID-19, as recent data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention show most patients with COVID-19 are no longer infectious after 10 days. Previously, TDH considered a case recovered after a 21-day period.
Stay with News 2 for continuing coverage of the COVID-19 Pandemic.
COVID-19 in Tennessee
(This reflects what the TDH is reporting each day at 2 p.m. CST )